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As the interest in home baking is increasing day-by-day among the home bakers, baking and customized cake decoration have carved a niche for itself in the world of patisserie and sugarcraft, opening huge business opportunities for the bakers. It has motivated many home bakers to become successful entrepreneurs from being an amateur. Cakes being an inevitable part of our celebrations assure that this trend is here to stay.

When it comes to the business side of customized cake decoration, it has many facets to it. Most of the bakers who are in the business did not start baking or decorating cakes with the intention of starting a business. The business just happened because of various reasons which could differ from person to person even though it was never much of a business thought to get started off in the first place.

If you have the interest, cake decorating is fun, and making someone’s special day even more special with your artistic skill is indeed what this career is all about. However, behind all that fun part, there goes a lot of work, time and money invested in it. Again, it’s not as intimidating as it looks like if you understand the basics of running a home bakery. Here, we have compiled 6 factors to consider that will help you ease the process of starting a home bakery.

1. Baking Tools & Supplies

In the beginning, you may only need a few basic tools and equipment such as a heavy-duty mixer, bowls, spatulas, an oven, and enough space to work around a cake which could probably be your own kitchen itself in the starting phase. Everything else could be added to the existing facility that you already have as the business grows. The raw materials/ingredients can be purchased according to the orders in the beginning, and later on, you can find a supplier who would provide the supplies for a reasonable rate.

2. Planning & Event Calendar

Advance planning and keeping a calendar for events and holidays are must when you are in this business, so that you can spice up your business with special editions for the season. Also, the calendar will help you manage the orders and delivery.

3. Food Safety & Health Requirements

When you’re in the food business you might want to make sure that you meet with the health requirements of your city for food safety purposes. Yes, baking is a messy work but it is a sweet mess if you take care of a few things before it becomes a big mess.

4. Price Tags & Expenses

Now comes the interesting part, putting a price tag on your product. In the beginning, if others outside your family ask for custom-made cakes, make sure they are willing to pay for it as well. The rule is if you are going to make this a business you must treat it like one. If you are new to this you obviously cannot charge them a bomb, however, make sure you don’t hesitate to charge them reasonably. To begin with, you can check out the prices with the nearby bakeries to get an idea and come up with a price tag that is not too intimidating for your customers. Later, as the business grows your price graph will also grow automatically.

5. Family Support

Along with the fun and happy decorative sprees, there is also a challenging side to running a home bakery. It requires some commitment of your time that your family may not want to sacrifice. So, your family’s support is very important if you are considering this as a home business. And as far as honing your skill sets are concerned, the classes and speciality equipment can be expensive too but totally worth.

6. Training and Honing your Skills

Bakeries make good cakes but that comes nowhere near to the homemade ones where you spend hours putting things together to make something exceptionally special. Again, that will happen only if you have enough knowledge in baking and sugarcraft. As soon as you figure out your interest lies in and around cakes & bakes, make sure to get yourself trained professionally in a culinary school to take your baking game to the next level.

If you have considered all these factors and are ready to step in, you are most welcome to the wonderful world of storytelling cakes and sugar arts. This is to be a most rewarding and creative business and is an art that keeps stretching your imagination and building your skills, making others happy.

If you love to bake and the idea of being a home baker excites you much, then you must begin with building your foundation right by learning the baking & patisserie skills from world-class chefs to have an amazingly adventurous journey ahead in the world of cakes and bakes. You never know where your knowledge in patisserie would take you in the future!

The post How to Start a Baking Business from Home? appeared first on ICCA.

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Gelato, a milk-based frozen dessert from Italy, flavoured with fruit & nut purees and other exciting flavours is a favourite of many around the world. It is creamy and yummy but is definitely not another name for ice cream. People of all ages love gelato and it is one of the best desserts Italy has to offer to the frozen dessert lovers. Although this dessert is traditionally Italian, it has become extremely popular that we can see gelaterias opening in many parts of the world.

Today, many foodpreneurs are showing interest in opening gelaterias either as a part of their existing business or on its own. To become a successful gelatiere, one should learn the art of making gelato in the most authentic way possible. Carpigiani Gelato University – Bologna, Italy is one such place where you will learn gelato making like a traditional Italian artisan. It is recognised as the most prestigious gelato school in the world that has produced the most number of Gelato Entrepreneurs world over.

Coming to the Middle East, ICCA Dubai is the only official international partner campus of Carpigiani Gelato University that delivers the complete curricula in its state of the art Gelato training facility. The ICCA – Carpigiani Gelato University offers an intense five-day Gelato program that comprises both theory and practical learning.

The program is a great platform for aspiring Gelato Entrepreneurs to get together their knowledge about the product and the business. It includes creating plentiful flavours of gelatos, learning how to achieve the perfect taste and texture, the do’s and don’ts in gelato making, technical details, knowing the chemistry and mathematics involved in the process and much more. The program will also give an insight into the hygiene practices, gelateria interior design and the economic feasibility of the business.

If you are an aspiring gelato entrepreneur in the Middle East or anywhere near, ICCA- Carpigiani Gelato University Dubai is the go-to place for you to learn everything about gelato in all its authenticity from the Masters itself.

The post ICCA-Carpigiani Gelato University Dubai appeared first on ICCA.

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Given Turkey’s rich history many of their most beloved dishes are influenced by neighbouring cuisines. Certain delicacies, however, are prominent and named after significant Turkish cities.  Well known appetizers to the specific regions have been looked into for this feature. Beef/Lamb/chicken kebabs in local aromatic spices cause pleasant chaos to the senses.  They don’t fall back in desserts as well…. let’s explore and relish this eid.

                                                                                          Appetizers

Borek with spiced charcoal smoked beef and pistachios

Börek is a generic term for Turkish savoury pastry made from wrapping thin loaves known as yufka or filo pastry with a filling made with aromatic spices and then cooking it. It’s thought to hail from Anatolia in today’s central Turkey. It spread considerably during Ottoman times and today it’s a traditional food way beyond the central Anatolian region. It’s hard to know where to start with börek. Shapes, textures and fillings can all be varied according to taste. The varieties are nearly endless.

Recipe

Ingredients: Quantity
Olive oil 2 tbsp
Onion, finely chopped 1 no
Garlic, minced 3 cloves
Minced beef 500 gm
Pistachios, roughly chopped 50 gm
Dried Apricot, finely chopped 30 gm
Assorted bell peppers, finely chopped 50 gm
Turkish red pepper flakes 10 gm
Roasted & ground cumin 10 gm
Roasted & ground coriander 10 gm
All spice powder 10 gm
Smoked paprika 10 gm
Oregano, dried 10 gm
Ground ginger 10 gm
Ground cinnamon 10 gm
Fresh parsley, finely chopped A/R
Salt  & pepper A/R
For Borek
Egg 1 pc
Olive oil 100 ml
Yogurt 100 ml
Milk 100 ml
Filo pastry 200 gm
Sesame seeds for topping A/R

Method

  1.  Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. In a saucepan, heat Olive oil over medium heat until caramelized. Add in the minced meat and all the dry spices and mix and sauté.
  3. Mix in the pistachios, apricots, assorted bell peppers and parsley.
  4. For the Assembly of borek:In a bowl, whisk together the egg and olive oil. When combined, add in the yoghurt, and then the milk.
  5. Line a baking sheet with baking paper
  6. Take two sheets of pastry, making sure they are exactly on top of each other, Cut the sheets in half length-wise.
  7. Spread around 1 tbsp of the egg mixture on each, making sure the pastry is thoroughly moist on top.
  8. Add a tbsp of the filling at one end of the pastry.
  9. Roll it up until the filling is covered. Fold in the sides and continue to roll till the end.
  10. Place on the baking paper, seam side down. Brush the börek rolls with the egg mixture.
  11. Sprinkle over sesame seeds.
  12. Bake the börek until golden and cooked through.
  13. Leave the böreks to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Rose borek with spiced potato

This Borek is called rose borek because of the rose shape the pastry is rolled into.

Recipe

Ingredients Quantity
Potatoes, boiled and mashed Olive oilOnion (chopped)Garlic (minced) 500 gm2 tbsp1 no.

3-4 cloves

MilkRoasted ground cuminRoasted ground coriander

Cayenne pepper

Red chilli flakes

Salt and pepper

Fresh parsley, finely chopped

For Borek

Milk

Olive Oil

Filo pastry

Egg Yolk

Sesame seeds

 

50 ml10 gm10 gm

10 gm

10 gm

A/R

A/R

200 ml

100 ml

200 gm

2 no

A/R

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute the onion and garlic till softened.
  3. Add the mashed potatoes and the dry spices and mix.
  4. Add in the milk and mix. Add in the herbs and mix.
  5. For the Assembly of borek: Whisk the milk and olive oil together in a bowl.
  6. Using two sheets of Filo pastry, brush the whole of the top side of the pastry with the milk/oil mixture
  7. Add about 2 tbsp of the filling in a thin strip.
  8. Roll up from the end of the filling into a long sausage.
  9. Brush a little extra milk/oil mixture at the end to seal if needed. Swirl the börek sausage into a rose/swirl shape, making sure to keep the end with 3-4 cm clearance out.
  10. Flatten the end with the fingers and put underneath the börek rose to seal. Set aside on the baking parchment.
  11. Brush the rose böreks first with the milk/oil mixture until the top and sides are moist, then with the egg yolk. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top.
  12. Bake the börek until golden and cooked through.
  13. Leave the böreks to rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.

                                                                                        Main Course

Adana Kebab

Kebabs of all kinds are common in Turkish and Middle Eastern cuisines. This particular version is named after the city of Adana in Turkey, where it is said to have originated and is traditionally made of minced lamb/beef mounted on a skewer and grilled over charcoal. Different cities and regions debate over how spicy the Adana Kebab should be.

Recipe

Ingredients: Quantity
Beef mince 500 gm
onion minced 1 no
garlic peeled and minced 3-4 cloves
Ginger garlic paste 1 tbsp
Roasted & ground cumin 2 tbsp
Roasted and ground coriander 2 tbsp
Ground sumac 1 tbsp
Smoked Paprika powder 1 tbsp
Salt and freshly ground black pepper A/R
Red chilli flakes A/R
clarified butter 2 tbsp
Freshly chopped parsley A/R

Method

  1. Marinate the ground beef with all the above ingredients
  2. Knead the mixture by hand until all combined.  Rest in the chiller overnight
  3. Grease hands with oil and take equal portions of the mince to form balls and thread them onto the skewer, then shape and release on to a baking sheet.
  4. Grill the kebabs, at 180 degrees Celsius for approximately 12 minutes, until well charred on both sides.
  5. Serve the kebabs on warm pita or naan bread with sliced red onions, parsley, tomatoes, and diced cucumbers.

Turkish Chicken Kebab

Recipe

Ingredients: Quantity
Chicken Thighs, boneless, skinless 1 kg
Greek yogurt 500 gm
Tomato paste 300 gm
Olive Oil ½ cup
Garlic, minced 2 cloves
Ginger minced 1 inch piece
Ginger garlic paste 2 tbsp
Onion, finely chopped 1 no
Fresh Parsley, finely chopped 2 tbsp
Lemon juice 30 ml
Dried Oregano 1 tbsp
Roasted & ground cumin 1 tbsp
Roasted and ground coriander 1 tbsp
Ground cinnamon 1 tsp
All spice powder 1 tsp
Smoked paprika powder 1 tbsp
Cayenne pepper 1 tbsp
Red chilli flakes A/R
Salt and freshly crushed black pepper A/R
Clarified butter for basting A/R

Method

  1.  Marinate the chicken with all the above ingredients except the clarified butter, and chill overnight.
  2. Thread on skewer and grill in the oven at 220 degrees Celsius till cooked and charred.
  3. Baste with clarified butter and serve with sliced onions, Turkish pide and minted yogurt.

                                                                                         Dessert

Semolina helva with pine nuts also known as irmik helvasi

Dessert  helva in Turkish cuisine is prepared by browning large amounts of semolina or flour in butter, then adding sweetened milk or water to create a soft, cooked paste. Helva plays an important role in Turkish culture. It’s a dessert that’s traditionally prepared at milestone events in a family’s life. Helva is made for all important life events, to commemorate births, deaths, marriages, circumcisions, leaving for and returning from army service, and even as a prayer for rain. Helva is also served on religious holy days and during holidays like Ramadan and Eid. During the Ottoman period, it was common practice for helva to be distributed to the poor on Fridays, Islam’s holy day of the week.

Recipe

Ingredients: Quantity
Semolina 1 cup
Butter, unsalted ½ cup
Sugar ½ cup
Milk 1 cup
Pinenuts 30 gm
Rose water 2 tbsp
Orange zest 1 tbsp

Method

  1.  Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Simultaneously, heat milk and sugar in another saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Once boiling turn off the flame, add in the rose water and orange zest, mix and set aside.
  3. Add in the pine nuts and semolina in the melted butter and roast to a golden colour while continuously stirring.
  4. Once roasted add in the milk mixture and mix and cook till all liquid evaporates.
  5. Serve warm with Turkish Icecream.

Watch the Turkish Cuisine recipe video here.

The post Celebrating Eid with Turkish Cuisine appeared first on ICCA.

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Have you ever wondered what is it that makes these great chefs so successful in their profession? We know that they all have one thing in common which is their exceptional ability to cook. However, mastering the skills to prepare great food is not enough, and there’s much more to it when it comes to finding success in the culinary world.

Nowadays, anyone who enters the world of culinary arts aspires to become a chef but due to the fierce competition in the industry, it requires a lot more than passion and training to get you up there in the game. So, let’s take a look at the must-have traits that make a great chef.

Organizational Skills

Being in a commercial kitchen is not just about cooking food; it takes a lot of careful planning and organizational skills to deliver quality work efficiently on time. And, when we say organizational skills, this goes beyond mise-en-place which is getting your ingredients, knives, pots and ovens ready before you start cooking.

Once you begin to take leadership roles in the kitchen you will understand the systematized touches on all aspects of a chef’s role. Staffing effectively, easy flow of traffic to the kitchen during busy hours, menu management, waste management, purchase and so much more come on to a chef’s plate when managing a kitchen. To handle all of these, a chef has to possess some good organizational skills to work his/her way up on the culinary ladder.

Desire to Learn

In any profession, if you’re really passionate about your work you will never lose the desire to learn more no matter at what stage your career is. And, this is very much true especially when it comes to a creative professional such as a chef. The difference between a good chef and a great chef is that the latter learns new things from every situation and people they interact with, regardless of their professional seniority. They always keep themselves updated with new industry trends and constantly keep experimenting to upgrade their knowledge.

Physical & Mental Stamina

Working in a kitchen demands a lot of physical as well as mental stamina. A chef should have the ability to keep going for long hours under high pressure on their feet, along with cuts, burns and greasy sweats which are all part of this profession. Also, a chef has to cope up with odd working hours that come along with high expectations and demands where one needs both physical and mental stamina to stay focused and deliver the best. So, if you’re mentally prepared, you will manage to push through these physical discomforts.

Flexibility & Efficiency to Multi-task

Multi-tasking is one of the most important traits of a great chef. In the kitchen, you are expected to handle a wide of range of tasks in a very efficient manner. It is only possible when you’re used to multi-tasking from your training period itself. Along with the multitasking, a chef should also be flexible enough to be a good team player. Sometimes, there occur situations due to a shortage of staff where you will have to step in and fill in the shoes to finish the work on time along with your team rather than playing the stereotype dictator head-chef role. In short, for a chef, no job is too mundane or low for his standards.

Creativity

There’s no doubt that a chef is a creative professional and creativity is what a chef is made of. Be it in flavours or presentation, it is the creative aspect of cooking that attracts people to an eatery. It is not just about following what you have learned in the culinary school but is about applying what you’ve learned in a deliciously creative way of your own. Being creative in the kitchen helps you cope with challenging situations such as a lack of a particular ingredient, which a creatively talented chef will be able to efficiently cover up.

So, if you think you have what it takes to be a successful culinary professional, then look up these attributes in yourself and be willing to nurture them further so that you can help yourself to reach for that culinary greatness.

The post 5 Essential Traits of a Culinary Professional appeared first on ICCA.

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Chocolate, the term that is enough to make us drool, is the ultimate choice for all the dessert lovers. When we think about chocolate, we either picture a bar of chocolate or a rich & moist chocolate cake with some perfectly whipped chocolate frosting. We mostly relate it to some kind of dessert to relish, although if you go through the history of chocolate it was strictly consumed as a bitter & spiced rich drink by the elites of the society.

According to the researches, the Mayans of Central America are believed to be the first to discover cocoa and to make this frothy chocolate drink out of the cocoa beans which became a treasured Mayan treat followed by many cultures including the Aztecs, and the Europeans for several centuries. This drink was held in such high esteem that the Mayans used to call it the “food of the gods.” It is said that even the word ‘chocolate’ was derived out of the Mayan word ‘Xocolatl’ which means ‘bitter water.’

During the Aztec period, after them conquering the Mayans, cocoa beans were very valuable that it was even considered equivalent to currency as it became the force of the Aztec economy. They used the beans as money and as far the Aztecs were concerned, money really did grow on trees.

It was much later when Hernan Cortes landed in the Aztec homeland and took the beans from there and introduced it to Spain. He not only introduced the bean but he also took the recipe and the equipment necessary to make the frothy chocolate bitter drink that was all the rage in Central America. Although Cortes was amazed at how much this drink valued to the Aztecs, personally, he did not enjoy the drink much and that made him warm up the drink a little which tasted better and thus the very first version of hot chocolate was born.

Spain kept cocoa a secret for a very long time, however, as the Spanish cooks started experimenting with the recipe by sweetening it to make it taste better, its popularity quickly spread to other European countries as well. Soon cocoa found its way to France and in a few years, the first chocolaterie was opened in Paris where they followed the same method of preparing the drink as Mayans and Aztecs did.

Chocolate soon made its jump to the Great Britain where it was received with much enthusiasm and respect that it soon opened up so many English chocolate houses, much like our coffee shops.

It was in the 1700s, owing to the industrial revolution there were different types of equipment and machines invented for the grinding of the beans which led to the mass production of cocoa and also the cocoa press that was used to squeeze the cocoa butter out of the bean leaving the butter and the cocoa powder separate. All these inventions especially the cocoa press helped in making the chocolate tastier, smoother and creamier leading to the formation of chocolate bars, milk chocolates or cocoa powder for baking.

At last in the 1800s the Fry Company of Bristol in England made the first ever edible chocolate after a 1000- plus- years of chocolate as a beverage and the rest is history.

It’s true that today chocolate is a high-end industry in itself and technology has played a huge role in its success. However, there is always something special about the good old artisan way of chocolate making where everything is handpicked and handmade. It’s a wonderful feeling to connect with your creations especially when you’re making some lusciously decadent artisan chocolates. And what better way is to have that connection than by learning the Artisan way of chocolate making to have hands-on experience in the creation of such satiating edible art?

The post A Brief Note on the History of Chocolate appeared first on ICCA.

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ICCA Dubai by Shruti Raj - 4M ago

We all are well aware of the fact that our senses play a significant role in the kitchen. When we speak about our senses in cooking, the first things that come to our mind are the aroma, taste and the texture of the food. Throughout the cooking process we smell the food, taste it and touch it to check the doneness.

The above said are the classic practices that are carried out in any kitchen for a perfect cooking experience.  But, have you ever tried listening to your food while cooking? Sounds crazy? Well, it’s real, the food you cook does talk to you, and all you have to do is listen to it intently to know about your cooking.

A kitchen is usually noisy with some obvious sounds of mixer grinders and utensils. However, amidst those usual sounds, there are many subtle whisperings of food being cooked that can help you become a seasoned hand in the kitchen.

The sizzle of meat hitting the grill, the searing sound of onions getting browned in a skillet, the sputtering sound of mustard in oil, the turbulent sound of water boiling, etc. are some of those subtle sounds that many of us don’t pay much attention to while cooking at home. However, taking note of these sounds in detail and understand the status of the food being cooked can only be done by a professional.

If you ask a Chef, he would agree that these restrained sounds can teach you a lot more about cooking than you can even expect. There is a world of difference in the sounds of each step in cooking; sweating and sautéing has no sound to sizzling sound, when deep frying you will hear bubbling and sputtering sounds, boiling and simmering has serious bubbling sound to silent bubbling, same kind of sound variations goes in whipping, creaming and for many more processes.

Sounds in the kitchen are loaded with information which is helpful for a budding chef. Checking every now and then is a good practice, but it is even better to listen to what you hear when you are in the kitchen. The practice can make you check on the food before it gets close to being over-cooked leading to the last minute mad rush.

Mastering the art of listening in the kitchen while cooking, requires proper training and expertise. What separates the great chefs from the mediocre ones, is the extra effort spent in learning the techniques well. At ICCA, we ensure that you are on the right track to attune yourself to the kitchen symphony

The post Sounds in the Kitchen appeared first on ICCA.

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